30 Days of Thankful – Day 5

Day 5 – For Kiley

Almost 5 years ago, I received a phone call while shopping in Burlington, VT. My friend was at the animal shelter and came across an adorable litter of Australian Cattle Dogs/ Australian Shepherd mixes. They had been rescued from a kill shelter in Indiana and all but one was spoken for… well technically, she put a hold on the last one for me.

Sure enough, I immediately left J Crew and drove 45 minutes to the shelter in Morrisville/Stowe. Once there, I quickly learned that I had to commit to taking the puppy by the end of the day because there was another couple waiting to take her; literally, they were standing in the lobby just waiting. That meant that Donny wouldn’t be able to even meet little Kiley before agreeing to bring her home. Fortunately, my friend and I were persuasive, or maybe just annoying and we peppered Donny at work with texts and phone calls until he agreed. It was at that point that we sat down on a bench in the “give your puppy a trial run room” while holding the puppy. In an instant she jumped off of the bench and immediately started limping around the room and crying. “Oh no! Are they going to deny me from taking her now?” Just like most human toddlers, holding an ice pack on for 5 seconds did the trick and she was good to go. They agreed to let me take her home on the following day, Christmas eve.







After 5 years of knowing Kiley, I am convinced that the “jump off the bench and limp around while crying incident” was a well thought-out plan to lure in owners. She may have strategized out of necessity as we later learned that she was the last puppy left because she was the alpha dog and earned the nick name “meanie.”  Of course, anyone who knows her will quickly tell you that she has a lot of energy but is definitely not mean.


She’s a spirited dog that loves running, frisbee catching, child licking, and skiing, when we get the chance. She shows amazing loyalty and absolutely loves to cuddle. She hung out with me around the clock while I was on bedrest and with all three of our children, she has assumed the role of the overprotective grandmother (if only she had opposable thumbs). 

We have been through so much with her in only 5 years; 2 eye surgeries, 3 skunk sprays, 1 raccoon treeing, 1 terrible barbed wire incident, and endless hours of deer herding.    

Overall, I am so fortunate to have her as a member of our growing family.    

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